Ethiopia is open to resuming talks on dams with Egypt and Sudan

NAIROBI (Kenya) -- An Ethiopian official claims that his country is open to talks with Egypt, Sudan and other countries about a controversial Blue Nile dam.

Ethiopia is open to resuming talks on dams with Egypt and Sudan

NAIROBI (Kenya) -- An Ethiopian official claims that his country is open to talks with Egypt, Sudan and other countries about a controversial Blue Nile dam. It will be Africa's largest hydroelectric plant.

Sileshi Bekele was the former negotiator for Ethiopia on the dam, and is now the ambassador of the United States to the country. He made the comment during a meeting between Mike Hammer, the U.S. special representative to the Horn of Africa.

Ethiopia's foreign ministry released a statement on Friday citing the ambassador to have highlighted "Ethiopia’s interest in resume the African Union-led trilateral negotiations over the GERD" (Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam).

Although the multi-billion dollar project will bring electricity to millions off-grid Ethiopians in the future, Sudan and Egypt are concerned that it will decrease the amount of water they get from the Nile River.

Many previous rounds of negotiations between Sudan, Egypt, and Ethiopia have ended in failure. Egypt is concerned that a rapid filling of the dam could reduce its share in the Nile waters. In case of dispute, it seeks a binding legal arrangement.

Ethiopia announced in February that it has begun to produce power from one unit at the dam.

On Friday, Dina Mufti, a spokesperson for the foreign ministry, stated to reporters that the third filling was on time this year.

He said, "We have been saying ever since the dam was built that tripartite negotiations will continue."

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